Parrish: NBA Teams More Likely To Draft All-Star Before One-And-Done

The notion that drafting players out of high school was "some sort of disaster" just isn't so, Gary Parrish says

The DA Show
February 26, 2019 - 11:39 am
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It seems inevitable that the one-and-done rule will soon go by the wayside, but what system will replace it? One possible solution, D.A. theorized, is that players could be drafted out of high school, yet still enroll in college to develop – which is exactly how other sports do it.

Would that type of system work for the NBA?

“Yeah, that would work absolutely,” CBS Sports college basketball insider Gary Parrish said on The DA Show. “I’m not against that. I’m also not against just going back to where we were once upon a time, when players could make themselves eligible for the NBA Draft out of high school – and if franchises wanted to pick them, they could; if they didn’t want to because they don’t want an 18-year-old as part of their franchise, they don’t want to invest that kind of money in somebody they haven’t been able to evaluate against high-level competition consistently, fine with me as well.”

There’s a notion that allowing players to go straight from high school to the NBA was bad for basketball – or, more specifically, bad for team executives and general managers. That notion, Parrish said, is false.

“If you would have simply – every time it was your turn to pick in the NBA Draft – handed a card to David Stern that said simply, ‘Give me the best high school prospect still available,’ you would have the best roster in the NBA, and it would not even have been close,” Parrish said. “Everybody focused on Kobe Bryant, LeBron James and the other Hall-of-Famers, but you were more likely to draft a future All-Star than a complete bust in that era. There was nothing safer you could do than take the best high school player available, so the idea that it was some sort of disaster just is not so.”

Granted, there were some high-profile busts.

Kwame Brown being one,” Parrish acknowledged. “But you were just as likely to draft a future All-Star, more likely to draft a future All-Star – not a good player; All-Star – than you were Kwame Brown. Like I’ve always said, nobody has ever forced an NBA franchise to draft a high school player. If you don’t want to do it, don’t do it. But what you find out, if we’ve made it the way it used to be again tomorrow, the high school players would be the ones getting picked first because they’re the most talented players year in, year out.”

So, yes, Parrish is fine with the old system or the system D.A. outlined. He’s just not fine with one-and-done.

“The only thing that I think is wrong on a very basic level – morally wrong – is making players who have no business being in college go to college to play basketball,” he said. “And I know that they’re not ‘making’ them. There are other options. But the most sensible option if you’re not allowed to enter the NBA Draft is to go to college for a year. The truth is, though Zion Williamson is having a blast and R.J. Barrett is having a blast, they probably don’t belong in college basketball. We’ve known for several years now what they were going to do for a living – and it’s make millions of dollars playing basketball.”